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You cannot be terminated over a reasonable accommodation request

The law makes it clear that people with disabilities must receive reasonable accommodations when necessary to perform their jobs. Additionally, employers may not penalize disabled workers who request reasonable accommodations. Unfortunately, many workers and employers in Florida have a poor understanding of reasonable accommodations, with both sides having a different viewpoint. It is often the word "reasonable" that causes the disparity in perspective between employee and employer.

Arguably the most important thing a disabled worker in Florida must understand is that while he or she has the right to certain accommodations, it does not mean the employee's every request must be fulfilled. If the requests would place an undue hardship on the employer or the business, the accommodations might not be deemed reasonable.

For example, if the employee's accommodation request would mean the elimination of fundamental job duties, the request may be considered unreasonable. This is because the worker would be earning money for work he or she is not providing, which could place a financial hardship on the employer. Remember, employers have rights as well in a work relationship.

If you are a disabled employee, you should know that you cannot be fired because of your disability. You also cannot be fired just because you have asked your employer to provide you with accommodations. In cases where a disabled worker has been fired for poor job performance, a lack of reasonable accommodations could indicate a wrongful termination. The best course of action in such a situation is to seek advice from an employment attorney.

The laws governing the rights of disabled employees can be complex. If you believe you are a victim of wrongful termination because of your accommodation needs in the workforce, you need a lawyer who understands and knows how to investigate your case.

Source: U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, "Enforcement Guidance: Reasonable Accommodation and Undue Hardship Under the Americans with Disabilities Act," accessed May 26, 2016

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